Jessie Snow – Tally’s Song
Author’s Note: This story is continued from ‘Tally’s Song’.
At the age of fourteen, Jessie Snow realized that she had to get away from her mother and their dumpy apartment. It was a one bedroom and Jessie slept on the old sofa in the small living room. Every night a different man slept in the bedroom with her mother. When Jessie started developing a woman’s body she began to attract the men. She had fought off a few of them, but it was getting to be too much and her mother never helped.
She got up late one morning, thinking she was alone, and went to the kitchen to fix some scrambled eggs. She just had a t-shirt and panties on. She was half asleep, stirring the eggs in the cast iron skillet when a man came up behind her, reached around and grabbed her boobs. He was naked. Jessie picked up the hot fry pan, swung around and landed it to the side of his head, which knocked him out cold, then feeling the heat burning her hand she dropped the hot pan, which landed on the man’s chest. Her mother heard Jessie scream and ran to the kitchen. She saw her latest one-nighter on the floor with a bloody head. “You little bitch, what the hell have you done? You killed him!” Jessie cried, “Mom, he tried to rape me!” Her mom stared at her, “Well, what the hell do you expect when you run around with next to nothing on. You ain’t a little girl anymore, sweetie. Get out! Get out of my life. I don’t need no damn competition!”
The man started moaning as he slowly came to. Jessie stared at him in disgust and left the room. She got dressed, stuffed the few clothes she had in her bojo bag and ran. For two years Jessie Snow ran, from one small town to the next. She got jobs here and there as a waitress or working as a stock girl in grocery stores. She was always looking over her shoulder, thinking she was being followed, so she never stayed too long in one place. One dark rainy night she found shelter in an warehouse. A small area among some boxes looked pretty safe to her. Wrapping her one flimsy blanket around her and using her bag as a pillow, Jessie curled up in a corner and fell asleep.
Sometime during the night she awoke crying from a bad dream and coughing. Her chest hurt so bad and she could barely breathe. When she struggled to sit up she heard a man’s voice, “Can I help you, miss?” She backed further into the corner, startled and scared. “Get away from me,” Jessie yelled, which made her cough more and she started shaking from fear and chills. “Miss, you need help. I won’t hurt you”, he held out his hands to show he had no weapons. “I promise I won’t hurt you. You need help. I have some water and aspirin. I’ll be right back. Just stay there, I’ll be right back,” he backed out of her space, holding his hand out palm down. He came back in a few minutes and sat a jug of water and a bottle of aspirins down near her. “I am going out to get you some cough syrup. There’s a little store about a block away and they’re open all night. You stay here, take that aspirin and keep warm,” he tossed her a blanket. “Cover up with this, it’s wool and will warm you up. Now don’t leave here. I’ll be back in about twenty minutes. You stay here, now, and drink as much water as you can.”
After he left, Jessie wrapped up in the wool blanket and stared at the water and aspirin for a long time. She wasn’t sure what she felt, a mixture of emotions swam through her. She was scared, yet she felt something she had never known, that someone was concerned for her, wanted to help. When the shaking and chills subsided a little she took two aspirin and drank a lot of water. The blanket was warming her and she dozed off.
“Are you alright, miss?” His voice startled her again and she jerked up to the corner. “It’s okay, it’s just me. I got you some cough syrup. It might make you drowsy, but it’s good stuff. It’ll help you sleep.” He handed her the bottle, “Just open it and take two swallows, about two teaspoons.” For some reason she could not grasp yet she trusted him and did as he said. He put a pillow down beside her. “I’ll be right around the corner here, waiting for you to wake up. If you need me you call, hear?” She nodded and lay down on the pillow.
“Oh! My name is Tally. You call me now if you need help. Ill be right around the corner.” She fell into a deep sleep.
Two souls, two hearts, so in need of love,
Among the ashes of a life so wrong,
Angels please guide us from above,
To love we need our whole life long.
The story continues in First Home – Tally’s Song
© 2016 Phyllis Doyle Burns